Originally posted on Fox Olympics  |  Last updated 6/27/12
NBA legend Magic Johnson responded Wednesday to candid comments by retired NBA star Clyde Drexler in "Dream Team," the forthcoming book by Jack McCallum that examines the 1992 US Olympic basketball team. In the book, which will be released July 10, Drexler told McCallum he resented that Johnson was named MVP in the 1992 All-Star Game and made the Olympic team, saying that his inclusion was based on sympathy for Johnson's then-recent HIV diagnosis. Drexler also suggested that Johnson's on-court abilities had declined. "He couldn't play much by that time. He couldn't guard his shadow. ... But you have to understand what was going on then. Everybody kept waiting for Magic to die," Drexler said, in an excerpt quoted in Deadspin. "Every time he'd run up the court everybody would feel sorry for the guy, and he'd get all that benefit of the doubt." In a video interview with The Wall Street Journal, Johnson, who said he had not been informed about Drexler's comments, registered his first response. "If that's how he felt, then that's how he felt. I think that Clyde was a guy that always fought for more publicity ... a guy who thought he should deserve more credit. But if he felt like that, I'm OK with it. I'm not a guy who's going to be upset that he said these types of things," Johnson said. "I think that what I would say is that, [from] Clyde or anyone else, I didn't want any sympathy. Only thing I wanted is that you treated me the same way that you treated me before you knew I had HIV," he added.
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